Topic Author
Posts: 3399
Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2001 10:18 pm


Wed Mar 20, 2002 1:25 am


Another report (this one a bit shorter), sections divided by a set of "*****"s...

The booking

This was the first time I booked through the opodo web page (Thanks, Capt Picard, for pointing it out in the Civ-Av forum), and I got what I believe to be the cheapest fare possible on the LON-MUC route for the chosen dates, booked at that time. Go had only the GBP240 fares left, and Ryanair would have been GBP50 to SZG, so all in all, I was delighted at my cheap GBP76.20 ticket.

Also, one hint: Simply searching LON-MUC gave me fares starting at GBP86 - still ten pounds cheaper than expedia and 20 cheaper than travelocity on the day I booked, but changing the search parametres to "time of day: morning" on both flights brought up this cheap fare. I was surprised that flying from LCY and back to LHR was cheaper than flying to/fro any other airport and back to the same one. Saturday mornings at LCY are not exactly busy times....

Lufthansa (operated by Augsburg Airways)
Dash 8-400
takeoff: 8.35 am (punctual)


I was there over 90 minutes before the flight (closer to 2 hours, in fact). I think I was probably the first person to do check-in, and I asked for a window seat (naturally) on the left hand side, either far in the front or far in the back. Unfortunately, everything up to row 6 was unavailable (I guess for balance reasons - later in the plane, no one was sitting in the front at all. Everyone was sitting in the last 5 rows) so I got row 16. I proceeded through the passport and hand luggage control into the waiting area.

The airport was deserted, and the few people there could not have filled 1 plane entirely, let alone the 4 or so that took off while I waited. It was quite boring and eventually, the Dash 8-400 landed (D-ADHC - the same one as from my last trip on this route).


Within 5 minutes, the passengers were called to gate 3 for boarding, there they were sent away to gate 6 where the plane actually was. We waited about five more minutes, then we were let in. Total passenger count: 14. Out of 70 seats. I had the seat next to me free, lots of legroom (it beats Ryanair and Go  Big grin ) and I was quite happy. The view wasn't great, but acceptable, looking down. The engine still was in the way. On boarding I asked the stewardess whether a flight deck visit would be possible, and she said she'd ask the crew.

We taxied to the runway quit soon and rather fast, turned around at the end and took off. Boy, that Dash 8 beats any 737 / 757 I've ever been in, and on rotation the pilot pulled the plane up abruptly. The entire thing felt a bit like what I imagine a rollercoaster to be like, and the group of young people around me were cheering and "yay"ing with delight throughout the first few minutes. We got into the clouds soon, but just as we flew past the dome, there was a little hole and I could see it.

The meal service was quick, the breakfast was good. It was a bagel with soft cheese and salmon (and of course the odd leaf of salad thrown in), and two cookies. Tea and coffee were served. Unfortunately, the flight was a bit bumpy until past FRA, so it wasn't until 30 minutes to landing that I was led to the cockpit. There, the door had been open all flight, but the Jumpseat was down as a bit of a barrier. The pilots were tired and exhausted and not in a good mood. They had gotten up at 3am, this was their last flight for the day. And they were a bit tired of flying and I guess having me in there didn't provide them with much fun either, so about five minutes later they sent me away again  Sad All in all, the crew on my last flight had been more cheerful and friendlier, but at least they were nice enough to let me in there at all....

We landed in Munich, rolled to the planestands between the cargo terminals again, where about 4 other Augsburg Airways Dash 8s were parked. The bus ride to the terminal was quick, and the passport control, too. A nice flight....

scheduled takeoff: 11.15 am (15 minutes latel)


I arrived 2 hours before the flight again, and the check-in queue in the central area, where all the LH check-in desks were situated, was only about 4 people long. The check-in lady was extremely nice and friendly and even cheerful, to my surprise, and more than happy to give me a window seat on the right hand side (to see London on approach) in the very last row. She asked me whether I wanted the last or the second last row, the former not being able to lean back the seatbacks, I told her I didn't mind, so the last row it was. I had some bulky luggage, so she called someone who came by and picked it up less than a minute later.

Then the waiting began... I read M Terminal (the free airport newspaper) and was delighted to see some articles about the local spotters and their hobby, including hints for photographic equipment and books for starters.
The flight

We were bussed out to the plane (the boarding had not been announced on intercom, but I spotted the queue). Instead of putting some unprotected stairs out like no-frills airlines, Lufthansa parked its Airbus (D-AIQN) at a mini-satellite, which contains of a small concrete/glass hut and stairs and a jetway. I found that a bit interesting...

I had the fortune of having the middle seat beside me empty, even though the plane was about 90% full. We waited for a while, were pushed back and rolled to the runway. Funnily, the loudest noise on the plane did not seem to be the engine at all, but rather the air-conditioning was constantly whistling. So much, in fact, that I was wondering whether the noise was a leak in the plane and that we were not pressurized, during the first few moments after takeoff.

The takeoff roll began nice and strong, but then the acceleration seemed to become much more leisurely, we rolled and rolled seemingly forever at a high velocity, without accelerating significantly. Felt like an A340 in the moments prior to rotation... As we lifted off, it took only a few seconds to arrive in the clouds, and more than 20 minutes until any blue became visible at all. Even then, it was very foggy, and the sky was mildly blue through the haze. Another 20 minutes later, the clouds had become a sea that we skimmed above, but still dense cover. Not very interesting, the view out of the window. At least until we were airbourne for 50 minutes or more...

The meal on this flight was a bit weird: A tiny bread roll and two small slices of Katenbrot (whole rhye flour bread) and a selection of salami, cheese, coleslaw and pates. I ate everything but the salami (there might be beef inside...). For dessert, there was a Milka-Chocolate bar that tasted like a copy of Duplo bars. Not quite as good as the LCY meals, but not bad, either.

The cabin crew were friendly throughout, and they came around twice with coffee and tea.

Still above continental Europe, we overtook a BA 737 with the Denmark tail (the blobs of colour - red, yellow, blue) quite closely, but it was below us and so all the pics I took will be very blurry, due to the angle of the window. Once we had started our descent, I could see one or two more planes, including a Go 737, but my film ran out so I ended up changing films while in the pattern. We flew only two loops.

As we joined the approach somewhere above the old dysfunctiuonal electricity plant in Battersea, I could see the London Eye and Parliament, Buckingham Palace etc. and the Thames, including the unused electricity plant and a few bridges. A few clouds blocked the view of my college and the Albert Hall, but after that the view was fairly clear. We landed on 27L. As we rolled off the runway, I saw an Aer Lingus A321 on final approach, and a BA 777 crossing the runway from T4. To me, the A321 seemed quite close already, so it was no surprise to see the 777 rushing across at quite an impressive speed. There was an interesting plane in the VIP area, but I could not identify what type it was. I think Tupolev 134, but not sure. Then, after the EI A321, a Nigerian government 727 with winglets landed to my delight. We had to wait a few moments as our plane stand (F2) was occupied when we arrived, and after an AF A320 rolled out we taxied in and parked.

I always find it odd to watch the luggage guys drive the equipment up to the plane - it sort of looks as if someone is shoving a conveyor belt up my.... erm, well, posterior.... I watched them while they offloaded luggage, and was happy to spot my own among it.

It took a while to get off the plane (I was the last off board), but the passport control was very quick. When I arrived at the baggage retrieval, most pax of my flight had already left, and I had my luggage within minutes of my arrival. Very efficient.

Hope you enjoyed the reports...
Keep an eye on Opodo, and try changing the default settings to different daytimes, it might save you some money. Also, anyone interested in cheap LCY flights might find it rewarding to try Saturday mornings, as there seem to be loads of empty planes flying around at that time...


Posts: 4006
Joined: Sun Jul 09, 2000 3:41 pm


Wed Mar 20, 2002 5:40 pm

Nice trip report.

Proud to be an Assyrian!
Posts: 4127
Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2002 8:55 pm


Wed Mar 20, 2002 8:36 pm

fantastic report! Btw, be glad that you have food on these flights... try picturing this in the US, all you have would be pretzels, pretzels and MORE PRETZELS!  Laugh out loud
Welcome to my starry one world alliance, a team in the sky!
Posts: 4006
Joined: Sun Jul 09, 2000 3:41 pm


Wed Mar 20, 2002 10:09 pm


...you forgot the microscopic can of coke! That's if you're lucky!

Proud to be an Assyrian!


Thu Mar 21, 2002 9:56 am

You have lots of luck with those cockpit visits.

Glad you enjoyed the ride; I was near LCY last week (actually in the shopping centre at Canary Wharf).

My friend pointed at a BAe 146 of EI leaving, presumably for Dublin-she remarked that she'd never been on that 'tiny little thing'-of course, little did she know that we had both flown buzz to Paris about...er....5 times on the 146!!

It does look like a great place to fly from. I bet its great not having to pay for the accommodation (since MUC is home, right?)

Oh well, I'm thinking of flying to Malmo on the 9th April with Ryanair-just because it seems to be the cheapest thing going.

Keep on flyyying!


Topic Author
Posts: 3399
Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2001 10:18 pm


Fri Mar 22, 2002 3:39 am

Thanks for the comments. Glad some people liked the report (initially, it fared quite poorly in the ratings-regime  Big grin )

Capt Picard: Thanks again for pointing Opodo out - I would never have tried them if it wasn't for your post.

I'm not sure I am really that lucky with flight deck visits, I suspect people have become more afraid to ask, but that pilots are just as welcoming as they've been pre-September...

LCY sure is fun to fly from. I enjoyed it immensely, especially the steep initial climbout. I just wish the weather would be nice the next time I fly from there. So far I have never been able to enjoy the view....

And my free accomodation is the best reason to fly to MUC/SZG. Maybe some time I could try Klagenfurt, although that would probably be a bit much to drive for my parents...

Have a nice trip to Malmo!



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